Be Careful With This Scary Halloween Costume Accessory

With Halloween approaching, many are getting into the spirit by looking for costumes that frighten. Whether choosing  a scary witch, chilling vampire or a creepy zombie costume, there is one spooky accessory that is considered dangerous and should not be used.

Decorative, or costume contact lenses are very popular this time of year because of their ability to change the color or overall appearance of your eyes. Many people use them to create a “frightening look”, but this attempt to terrify can come at a cost to your vision.

It is important to know that contact lenses are medical devices intended to correct your vision and are regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). They should not be worn unless prescribed by an eye doctor. Retailers that advertise them as cosmetics or sell them over-the-counter, without a prescription are breaking the law.  The issue with these “fashion” lenses is that they are advertised as one size fits all, but this is not accurate. Before wearing contact lenses, your doctor should measure each eye to properly fit the lenses and evaluate how your eye responds to them. A poor fit can cause serious eye damage, including:

  • Scratches on the cornea (the clear dome of tissue over the iris—the part of the eye that gives you your eye color)
  • Sorneal infection (an ulcer or sore on the cornea)
  • Conjunctivitis (pink eye)
  • Decreased vision
  • Blindness

According to an article published by the FDA, “The problem isn’t with the decorative contacts themselves. It’s the way people use them improperly—without a valid prescription, without the involvement of a qualified eye care professional, or without appropriate follow-up care.” Many of the issues arise due to a lack of care instructions on decorative contact lens packaging.

The FDA warns to never buy these types of contact lenses from street vendors, beauty supply stores, novelty or Halloween stores, or an internet site that does not require a prescription.

If you are determined to get decorative contact lenses to complete your scary look this Halloween, speak to your eye doctor and get a prescription that includes the brand name, lens measurements, and an expiration date. Then go to a seller that requires you have a prescription. Failure to do so, and the biggest scare could be the damage you do to your eyesight.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Mirna Calixto

This month we would like to introduce you to Mirna Calixto, receptionist at the main information desk.
Mirna has been working at Jamaica Hospital Medical Center for two years and says that she feels very privileged to be one of the first points of contact for people visiting the hospital. She enjoys helping people and making sure that our visitors have a positive experience. Mirna speaks both English and Spanish which is a big asset at the hospital’s information desk.
Mirna is a Queens native who grew up in Jamaica. She is a graduate of Hillcrest High School and is now currently enrolled at LaGuardia College studying for a career in a health care.
Mirna has three children, two girls and a boy and also two pets, one is a small dog and the other is a golden macaw bird that actually speaks-sometimes too much she says.
Her favorite season is the fall because she believes that there is something special about the changing colors of the leaves. In her free time she enjoys hiking, visiting water parks and traveling to see other states.
Mirna shares that the best part of working at Jamaica Hospital, besides the wonderful people that she works with, is interacting with guests all day and providing them with assistance. She always tries her best to ensure that they receive the information needed to make their visit go smoothly.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

What’s That Ringing in my Ears?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Many of us will hear it from time to time. Only you can hear it- a ringing in your ear that may come and go.  The medical term for it: tinnitus. According to the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD), about 10% of adults in America have experienced tinnitus lasting at least five minutes in the past year.

Some of the causes you may experience ringing in your ears can be:

  • Trauma to the ear. This can include listening to your music loudly. The recommended listening should be at less than 90 decibels according to the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) guidelines.
  • Wax Build- up. Some people produce more ear wax than others. Instead of using Q-Tips, try softening the ear wax with peroxide or mineral oil and allow the wax to dissolve and drain.
  • Excessive use of certain medicines such as aspiring or antibiotics.
  • Too much caffeine, nicotine, or alcohol, have also been known to cause ringing in the ears as well.

Is the ringing persistent? Contact Jamaica Hospital’s ambulatory care center and set an appointment to see a physician at 718-206-7001.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

How Do You Treat a Bloody Nose?

Most of us have suffered a nose bleed at some point in our life, and many have often wondered “what is the reason?”

Our noses contain many blood vessels that help warm and humidify the air we breathe. These vessels are easily damaged or injured because they lie on the interior surface of our nose. When they get injured, the result is often a bloody nose.

Thankfully, in most instances nosebleeds aren’t serious and they can

be treated quickly and easily at home. When one occurs, you should follow these simple tips:

  • Remain calm – Getting nervous can actually make you bleed more
  • Sit upright – You nose will stop bleeding quicker if you keep your head above your heart
  • Lean forward. This will prevent blood from draining down the back of your throat
  • Pinch your nostrils closed. Press your thumb and index finger over your nostrils for approximately 10 minutes and breathe through your mouth. The pressure will make the blood stop flowing.

Once the bleeding has stopped, do not touch or blow your nose as it may start to bleed again. If it does, blow your nose to get rid of any blood clots. You can also spray a nasal decongestant in your nostrils and pinch them closed again.

Although you can’t always prevent a nosebleed, there are some things you can do to reduce the chances of getting one, such as:

  • Keep your nose moist – Dryness can cause nosebleeds. Swab a thin layer petroleum jelly inside your nostrils three times a day, including before going to bed.
  • Use saline spray – Spraying saline in your nostrils helps keep the inside of your nose moist.
  • Use a humidifier – Especially during the winter when the air is most dry
  • Don’t smoke – This can irritate the inside of your nose and dry it out.
  • Don’t agitate your nose Placing your fingers inside your nose to scratch or pick it . Also avoid blowing your nose too hard as these actions can damage the blood vessels.
  • Avoid cold and allergy medications – They can dry out your nose. In some cases, certain medications can cause or intensify nosebleeds.

While the majority of nosebleeds are not cause for concern, you should see your doctor if the following take place:

  • The bleeding goes on for more than 20 minutes.
  • The bleeding was caused by an injury, such as a fall or something hitting your face.
  • You get nosebleeds often

To make an appointment at Jamaica Hospital, please call 718-206-7001.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Actions That Can Reduce The Risk of SIDS

Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) is defined as the sudden and unexplained death of an infant under the age of one. It is the leading cause of death in babies in the United States. Most cases of SIDS occur while infants are asleep; this is why it is also referred to as “crib death”.

Despite many years of research, the cause of SIDS is still unknown; some experts theorize that the cause may be the result of defects in the part of a child’s brain that controls breathing and arousal from sleep.

Although the cause of SIDS is undetermined, research does indicate that factors that include a combination of factors in physical and sleep environments can make infants more vulnerable.   According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), parents and caregivers can take the following actions to help reduce the risk of an occurrence:

  • Make sure babies sleep on their backs (Babies should not sleep on their stomachs or sides)
  • Avoid placing soft materials such as quilts or comforters in cribs or wherever babies are placed to sleep
  • Place babies to sleep on a firm surface( Infants should not be placed on soft surfaces such as waterbeds or sofas)
  • Breastfeed for as long as possible- especially within the first six months of a baby’s life
  • Adults should avoid sharing beds with babies
  • Use cribs that conform to the safety standards of the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission
  • Abstain from drinking , smoking or using illicit drugs during pregnancy and after  giving birth
  • Monitor the temperature in a baby’s  sleep space to ensure they are not too warm

The CDC reports that due to education, incidents of SIDS have declined.  Jamaica Hospital Medical Center is raising awareness during SIDS Awareness Month, which is observed in October, by educating the community about ways to reduce risks.

Although there has been a declination in the number of infant deaths attributed to SIDS, It is important to keep in mind that SIDS remains as the leading cause of death in babies and parents should always take measures to provide a safe sleep environment for their child.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Flu Prevention

It is the middle of October and it is also the beginning of flu season. None of us want to catch the flu so it is a good idea to take some preventative measures that can help us to stay healthy.
Here are a few of the ways we can prevent getting the flu:
• Everyone who is six months of age and older should get the vaccine every year
• Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
• Wash your hands frequently with soap and water.
• Keep a hand sanitizer handy for the times soap and water are not available.
• Avoid touching your hands to your eyes, nose and mouth.
• Whenever possible, disinfect surfaces that are frequently used by others such as tables and chairs.
• Clean your drinking glasses and dishes in hot water and with soap
• Keep your immune system healthy by eating a balanced diet, exercising  regularly and getting enough sleep every night
• Tobacco can suppress the immune system, so it is highly recommended to quit smoking.
If you would like to schedule an appointment with a physician at Jamaica Hospital to discuss the flu vaccine and other ways to stay healthy, please call 718-206-7001.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

How to Help Your Teenager with Acne

Acne is a condition that teenagers have been dealing with for generations, and while there is no cure for acne, there have been many advancements in how it can be treated, making today’s generation better equipped to deal with the problem.

There are many myths associated with what causes acne. Some believe that diet plays a role, but there is no proven link between eating greasy food or chocolate and the development of acne. Similarly, stress does not cause acne (although it can make it worse).

The reason for the onset of acne for many adolescents is changing hormones. Teenagers develop certain hormones called androgens when they reach puberty. These hormones stimulate the glands in the pores to produce more oils. The excess oils can lead to pores becoming clogged. If a clogged pore becomes infected, a pimple forms. Pimples can come in many forms, but the most common type (and least severe) are blackheads or whiteheads. It is estimated that approximately 85% of all teens develop this form of acne on their face, neck, chest, back, and shoulders.

The most important way to treat acne is to keep your skin clean. Washing your face twice a day with a mild soap and warm water is key, but experts advise against harshly scrubbing the acne-ridden area as that will only irritate the skin and worsen the situation – instead gently blot the area in question.

There are also many effective over-the-counter medications designed to help with this problem. Products that contain benzoyl peroxide have proven to be effective as they reduce oil production and also contain antibacterial properties. Other medications may contain ingredients such as salicylic acid, alpha hydroxyl acid or sulfur,  designed to unclog pores and remove dead skin cells.

If over-the-counter medications prove ineffective a dermatologist can help. A dermatologist can prescribe stronger acne medications and offer a variety of treatment options.

Jamaica Hospital offers dermatology services in its Ambulatory Care Center. For more information, or to schedule an appointment, please call 718-206-7001.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Five Steps to Lowering Blood Pressure

If you have been diagnosed with high blood pressure, here are five lifestyle changes that you can make to help to lower it:
• Losing just ten pounds can have a significant effect on blood pressure.
• Partaking in regular physical exercise such walking, jogging, swimming and dancing are all good choices.
• Eating foods with whole grains, fruits, vegetables and low fat dairy is important.
• Drinking less coffee and tea will help lower blood pressure
• Quitting smoking will help to lower blood pressure.
High blood pressure can cause significant health problems if left untreated. Consult with your physician about ways that you can keep yours under control. If you would like to schedule an appointment with a physician at Jamaica Hospital, please call 718-206-7001.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Organ Donor Registry Day

New York State currently holds the second lowest number of organ donors with 26% registered compared to 50% nationwide.  That’s why the state has adopted October 4, as its additional Organ Donor Registry Day.

In an effort to bolster the number of organ donors in NYS, both Flushing and Jamaica Hospital Medical Center’s hosted a registration in their main lobby.

On hand to give their personal account of the importance of organ donation was Mary Fischer, CNA at FHMC and her daughter, Lauren Fischer, a double lung transplant recipient.

According to the United States Department of Health and Human Services nearly 124,000 men, women and children are awaiting organ transplants in the US.  One organ donor can save up to eight lives, however 21 people still die each day waiting for an organ.

Here are a few popular myths and facts about organ donation:

Myth:  Age, illness or physical defects can prevent me from becoming a donor.

Fact: A person’s medical condition is evaluated at the time of death to determine what organs and tissues are viable for donation. People living with chronic diseases or those who have a history of cancer or other serious diseases are still encouraged to join the donor registry.

Myth: If doctors know that I am registered to be an organ or tissue donor, they won’t work as hard to save my life.

Fact: The first priority of a medical professional is to save lives. Organ and tissue donation isn’t even considered or discussed until after death is declared.

Myth: My religion doesn’t support organ and tissue donation.

Fact: Most religions support organ and tissue donation.  Discuss organ and tissue donation with your spiritual advisor if you have concerns on this issue.

Myth: My family will be charged for donating my organs.

Fact: Costs associated with recovering and processing organs and tissues for transplant are never passed on to the donor family.

To find out how you can register as organ, eye and/or tissue donor please visit http://www.liveonny.org/

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

October is National Bullying Prevention Month

 

October is National Bullying Prevention Month is a nationwide campaign founded in 2006 and its mission is to reach out to communities in an effort to educate and raise awareness of bullying and the tools for prevention.

Bullying occurs when an individual or group possesses an imbalance of power, either from a physical or social status perspective, over another person or group. While bullying is prevalent among all age groups, it has become a serious cause for concern among children.

The National Bullying Prevention Center defines bullying as behavior that hurts or harms another person physically or emotionally. Those being bullied often have difficulty stopping the behavior directed at them and struggle to defend themselves.

Statistics have shown that at least 28 percent of students, ages 12-18, reported being bullied at school during the year. Additionally, 7.2 % of students admit to not going to school due to personal safety concerns. Many fear the physical and verbal aggression of their peers, and many more attend school in a state of anxiety and depression.

Many children will not tell parents they are being bullied until the situation escalates, but there a few changes in their behavior that can alert you. Signs that your child may be a victim of bullying include refusing to speak about their day at school,not wanting to go to school, unexplained marks and bruises, asking for more lunch money, complaining of frequent headaches and stomach aches,sudden loss of friends and frequent nightmares.

If you find that your child is being bullied, you will need to document the dates, times and places of the action. If the bullying is taking place on school grounds, call the school and schedule a face to face meeting with a teacher or principal. If not on school grounds, notify the police.

Most schools have adopted an anti-bullying policy. Obtain a copy to determine if the bully violated school law. Bullying is best handled when you work together, with the proper authorities.

After notification, be sure to follow up with your child, and the school, to make sure that the bullying has stopped.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.